Suit up and roll out with this year's latest and greatest in cycling tech.
Peter Koch 1 / 5
Ride the Right Way
The newest top-of-the-line, go-anywhere bikes. Jerseys so high-tech they save you energy (and, just as important, won’t make you look like a d-bag). And cycling wear so stylish and slim-fitting you can wear it straight to your cubicle. Here’s everything you need to know (and buy) to become an expert biker right now.
FOR: Dusting the peloton on the open road.
THE BIKE: The C5 is the first-ever endurance bike from aero-obsessed Cervélo. It’s comfortable and well-balanced for long rides and also one of the lightest frames on the market at just under two pounds. ($7,000, cervelo.com)
THE HELMET: Giro’s top-end helmet, the Synthe MIPS, blends low weight, aerodynamics, and cooling in unprecedented ways. ($270, giro.com)
THE SHADES: The Smith PivLock Arena Maxes are so light on your nose you barely notice them. ($160, smithoptics.com)
THE KIT: The aerodynamic Castelli Aero Race 5.0 Houndstooth RP Jersey saves you a whopping 10 watts at 25 mph when compared with a normal jersey ($130, rescue-project.org). The Sugoi RSE Bib Short, with silicone-infused legs, is second-skin-level comfort. ($240, sugoi.com)
FOR: Road and off-road riding (on the same ride).
THE BIKE: Just because the road ends doesn’t mean your ride has to. The Cannondale Slate Force CX1 puts chunky 42c tires on 27.5-inch wheels, giving the new “all road” bike the cornering grip and float of a mountain bike with the speed and handling of a road racer. Throw in a Lefty Oliver suspension, and this badass frankenrig can handle any surface. ($4,260, cannondale.com)
THE HELMET: Longtime ski helmet company Smith made the Overtake MIPS, an aerodynamic lid that’s lightweight, streamlined, and perfectly vented. ($290, smithoptics.com)
THE SHADES: With photochromic tech and polarized protection, the Zeal Optics Big Timber (not pictured) works in any light condition. ($219, zealoptics.com)
THE KIT: The Search and State S1-A Riding Jersey is a classic three-pocket jersey that’s exceptionally durable. Even better: You won’t stand out like a billboard wearing it ($150, searchandstate.com). The waterproof, stretchy Rapha Hooded Rain Jacket comes equipped with a roll-away hood, high-vis drop-down tail, and reversible cuff tabs ($350, rapha.cc). Inspired by the original 610km Bordeaux–Paris one-day race, the Escadrille All+Seasons Bib Short is designed for maximum comfort during longdays in the saddle, both on-and off-road ($250, escadrille.cc). The all-new Sidi SD15 shoe is built for the mountain bike rider who needs sole flexibility and some lugs for hiking, yet still wants a shoe with a sleek look. ($200, sidisport.com)
FOR: Cruising your way to work (sans bike share).
THE BIKE: With the speed of a road bike and the durability of a commuter, the Marin Fairfax SC6 DLX also has commuter friendly features like fenders, racks, a low-maintenance carbon belt drive, an 11-speed internal hub, and a dynamo-powered front light. ($2,419, marinbikes.com)
THE HELMET: An adjustable venting system makes the Bell Annex a great year-round commuter lid, no matter the temperature. ($125, bellhelmets.com)
THE SHADES: The Smith Lowdown ChromaPop (not pictured) blends street-friendly styling with high-tech polarized lenses that enhance color and clarity. ($209, smithoptics.com)
THE KIT: The slim-fit Betabrand Oxnard Button-Down Shirt is every bit as work-ready as your stiffly starched oxford, but it’s made from a supersoft and breathable organic cotton/hemp blend. ($88, betabrand.com) The Chrome Storm Cobra 2.0’s three-layer waterproof shell not only keeps you dry but also has articulated shoulders that reveal reflective accents that disappear when you step off the bike ($200, chromeindustries.com). Made from a stretchy Japanese denim and sporting articulated knees and a diamond crotch gusset, Swrve Kaihara Denim Slim Jeans are the ideal stealth activewear ($150, swrve.myshopify.com). DZR Mechanic bike shoes’ classic skate styling belies bike-friendly features like hidden cleat mounts and a nylon midsole shank that’s variably stiff for pedaling power transfer yet flexible for easy walking ($99, dzrshoes.com). With its 25-liter capacity, the Inside Line Equipment Default bag hits the sweet spot for everyday commuting loads. The outside is sturdy 1000D Cordura, the inside is lined with waterproof vinyl, and the thing is flat-out stylish. ($240, ilequipment.com)
FOR: Shredding down those singletrack.
THE BIKE: “Really, a hardtail?” you ask. The Specialized Fuse Pro 6Fattie may not have rear suspension, but it does rock its three-inch-wide Ground Control 27.5-plus tires, which can run at low pressure to improve traction and soak up the trail’s hard edges. ($3,100, specialized.com)
THE HELMET: The POC Tectal Race offers a unique ventilation and unibody construction, full coverage, a goggle-strap keeper, and a Recco reflector to help search and rescue find you faster if things go wrong. ($210, pocsports.com)
THE SHADES: The electronic UVEX Variotronic FF shades transition from dark to light (and back again)—that’s from 16 to 64% light transmission—in a tenth of a second. ($350, uvex-sports.com)
THE KIT: The Kitsbow Ride Tee is a merino-poly blend that breathes well and holds up to abuse ($135, kitsbow.com). These full-featured (if pricey) Traverse MTB Shorts from Acre are light, water-repellent, fast drying, yet still soft ($165, acre-supply.com). The Louis Garneau NeoShell Cycling Jacket (not pictured) is a waterproof hardshell but with the ventilation, stretchability, and softness of a softshell. Waterproof pockets keep your gear dry, and reflectors help you stay safe on any road ($280, louisgarneaucom). You never know what lies ahead on the trail, but rest assured the Lake MX180 shoe can handle it with its grippy outsole for bushwhacks and an armored toe for rock strikes. ($190, lakecycling.com)